Saurer M2 Octopus 10×6 and other all-terrain pendulum axles

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Acid, does that remind you of something ? I personally did not know.
Except that a strange photo of a tacot in 10 wheels had been running for a long time in Tumblr blogs and Facebook and no one knew how to put a name on it and that it was actually a Saurer prototype, M2 Octopus.

This Swiss foundry company was created in 1853 par Franz Saurer. In 1862 Saurer starts producing embroidery machines, then petrol engines for industry and agriculture in 1888 and finally his first automobile in 1896. Cars will be abandoned early 1900 for the benefit of buses and trucks, the basis of our topic of the day.

It was in 1903 that the first truck was built, 5 tonnes for 30 horses…
Their first diesel engine is built in 1909, and a Saurer factory sets up in Suresnes in France and employs over a thousand people ...

It was during the Second World War that Saurer got involved in military equipment with the Saurer M4 4 trucks.×4, Acid M6 6×6 and Saurer M8 8×8. They will also build aircraft engines for Hispano-Suiza and Maurane-Saulnier.

It was in 1982 that the Saurer company will stop producing military and civilian trucks, to leave room only for industrial weaving looms. The firm still exists today, taken over by the Chinese group JinSheng in 2013. For more details, visit the wiki.

Acidic M6 – 6×6

Created in 1940, Payload 2,5 tonnes, 354 units built.
Length 5.44m, weight 6900 kg, Transmission Saurer 4 C, speed 50 km/h.
Diesel 100 ch / 73,5 kW a 1900 tr / me.


Acid M8 – 8×8

Created in 1942, Payload 3,5 tonnes, 79 units built.
Length 5.88m, weight 7400 kg, Transmission Saurer 4 C, speed 50 km/h.
Diesel 100 ch / 73,5 kW a 1900 tr / me.

Acidic M2 - 10×6

Created in 1936, it was never produced but was still built and remained in the prototype state.

It is a machine equipped with pendulum axles called anti-grounding, 2 to be precise. When the machine is placed on a flat floor, these free axles stay in the air without touching the ground. They are only used in off-road mode to help cross difficult passages.

It’s the work of engineer Josef Birmans, Development Manager, military vehicle testing and production at Saurer.

History does not say why the M2 did not pass the production stage at Saurer's. Yet a French competitor produces multi-wheels with pendulum system (I didn't know him either before I wrote this article), I named LAFFLY.

Laffly (1849-1952) was a French truck and utility vehicle manufacturer based in Boulogne-Billancourt (92) near Paris. He worked closely with the company Hotchkiss especially for their engines.

The Laffly S15, S20, S25, S35, S45 and W15 - 10×6 and 8×6

All of these military devices used a base 6×6 and 1 or 2 stranding axles. I will not go into technical details if military enthusiasts want to write an article about this (or enlarge it), they will be welcome !

The only real visible difference is that Laffly used small pendulum wheels whereas Saurer had planned large ones.

Chassis LAFFLY S 35 court, Deposit : box no. 447


The Laffly V15 was based on a 4×4 equipped with 1 or 2 pendulum axles, 8×4 and 6×4.

There were still other off-road builders with pendulum axles, as an example this Lorraine 28 built on a Tatra chassis, in 8×6…

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::A few more pictures:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

For the little story, the Saurer M4

Recent Saurers



Founder of mm2 France, oto6, then from Sixmania. The 6 wheels and more have always been a passion for me. It started in 1980 thanks to a certain Christian de Léotard, you know ?

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